Cargo plane skidded on runway after landing with 16 tonnes on board

Cargo plane.
Cargo plane.

No-one was injured when a cargo plane skidded along the runway at Belfast International Airport last year, according to the English Department of Transport's Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB).

There were two crew on board when on October 4, 2016, there occurred intense vibration to the right landing gear of the Boeing 737-4Q8 TNT Express plane when it landed at Aldergrove's runway 25.

"On landing, an intense vibration developed, the crew cancelled the automatic brakes and thrust reversers, as there was sufficient runway, and the aircraft came to a stop," report the AAIB in their November safety bulletin.

"The lower torsion link was found to have fractured on the right main landing gear (MLG) possibly due to excessive MLG vibration (shimmy).

"The cause of the vibration could not be established but may have been related to the speed of the aircraft on landing, and possibly a problem with the shimmy damper or freeplay within the joints associated with the upper and lower torsion links," the AAIB added.

The plane suffered a fractured lower torsion link on the right main gear during the incident, although mercifully there were no injuries.

The jet, operated by the Netherlands-headquartered FedEx subsidiary TNT express, was carrying 16 tonnes of cargo - 98% of its maximum landing weight - from East Midlands Airport when the accident occurred.